By Dr Christian Jarrett. Suppose there were a device you could buy that zapped your brain whenever your mood dipped.…
ABOUT THE ARTIST: Genís Carreras, a Spanish graphic designer based in London, produced the acclaimed “Philographics” series.
1. What prompted you to do the Philographics series?
I’ve been interested in philosophy since I was a teenager and I wanted to mix this with my other passion, graphic design.
2. In what ways do design and philosophy intersect?
I don’t think they do! Graphic design is practical, accessible and visual and philosophy is usually seen as theoretical, complex and heavy… In my project I try to get the best from both worlds, making philosophy more visual and graphic design more meaningful.
3. Stephen Hawking recently proclaimed that philosophy was dead – what do you think?
I agree that science is now giving us most of the answers about the universe, but I think there’s still room for philosophers and artists to explore other kinds of questions: Why are we here? What’s the purpose of all this?
4. Why is philosophy important?
Some people may say ‘to find the answers’ but in my experience, the more philosophy books I read, the more questions I get. I think it’s important to find a reason to do what you do. To have some perspective about ourselves and our lives and to try to be a better person. I think philosophy can help us with this.
5. What do you see as the purpose of your job as a designer?
I like to think I’m on this to make things simpler and more accessible to everyone, while making something beautiful. I’d like my work to be seen as something meaningful, able to communicate without words.
6. How has your philosophical view altered by living in a different culture and operating in another language?
I’ve been living abroad for the last 3 years now, and it has been the best time of my life so far. I discovered that the best things happen outside your comfort zone, so I try to stay away of it as much as I can. It also added perspective to my life and made me review a lot of things I took for granted.
7. What constitutes individual freedom for you?
To be brave enough to go and to do whatever your will dictates without feeling attached to places, to work, to people. To be with people you like, where you want to be and doing what you really feel like doing.
8. Who is your favourite philosopher and how has he/she shaped your thinking?
Heraclitus, one of the first ancient Greek philosophers. In one of his aphorisms he says that we can’t step twice in the same river, because the flow of water is not the same, but also because we are not the same person. Everything is in constant change and we should embrace change instead of denying it. I try to keep this in mind when people have to say goodbye or when my favourite things get broken or lost.